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What makes the construction industry so unique is that the challenges needing to be solved are always different. Every project is unique, thanks to different locations, building types, delivery methods and even the project teams constructing the project. Nothing is ever exactly the same.

When faced with unique and complex challenges, having different perspectives provided by increased diversity—of experience, background and knowledge—better equips project teams to execute the right solutions.

Women in Construction Bring Diversity and Fresh Perspective to Challenges

According to the National Association of Women in Construction (NAWIC), women make up 9.9% of the construction industry in the United States. In an industry with high male representation, the opportunity for women to share their unique perspectives can be revolutionary for construction teams.

By promoting diversity on construction projects, teams can capitalize on creativity and communication that can break through the status quo and lead to new and different solutions. When women add their unique perspectives, the bonds on a project team and the success of the project is strengthened.

Better Resembling Clients and Communities

When construction companies build teams that resemble the clients and communities they serve, it increases the likelihood of success on a project. By having women on project teams, firms add value to their clients by providing additional perspectives that can help them achieve their business and project goals.

A project team that better emulates the diverse makeup of a community is more equipped to foresee local challenges and better execute resolutions. Moreover, it also provides a fresh perspective on opportunities available to future generations. A construction company that attends a career fair with a diverse team of men and women are much more likely to attract and retain a wide variety of new employees.

Deepening Bonds to Create a Lasting Impact

Harnessing workplace enthusiasm is key to supporting, developing and furthering a diverse work environment. One tool to encourage the creative and problem-solving skills of women in construction and empower them to continue reaching for the next opportunity is professional peer groups either at the jobsite or the company level. These groups can provide a lasting impact by directly promoting diversity and encouraging a safe and comfortable atmosphere that allows women to share their perspectives.

At a minimum, these groups should encompass the following key components:

  • Professional development;
  • Networking and fellowship;
  • Mentorship and STEM leadership; and
  • Community service.

Professional peer groups at work not only provide a place for women to grow, but they also provide an outlet to build relationships and showcase the impact that their work has on local communities.

The benefits of these groups do not stop once a project has been completed. More often than not, women take the spirit of these groups with them to the next project, helping to plant the seeds of development for future project teams.

Building an Inclusive Future

Even today, it is not uncommon to be the only woman “at the table” in the construction industry. Female leaders have an opportunity and responsibility to empower others by fostering a more diverse and inclusive professional environment. As women continue to affect change in the construction industry, the work environment has evolved into a more welcoming and collaborative atmosphere. Creating a tailwind for young female professionals to enter, embrace and grow in the construction industry allows firms to strengthen project teams through the contribution of additional viewpoints.


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